The public information office said the argument sessions scheduled for later this month and on May 4 will be held telephonically in keeping with Covid-19 public health guidance.
Under usual court tradition, oral arguments would not resume until next October, and there is no word yet whether the nine justices will hold hearings for their 2021-22 term by teleconference or in their grand courtroom.
The justices have been fully vaccinated for weeks and are taking precautions when they meet in their columned building across from the Capitol. it would be difficult to know whether lawyers who arrive from across the country to present cases would be similarly vaccinated and protected from the virus.
The format lacks the lively and substantive exchanges that can occur in the courtroom. But the teleconference format has been accompanied by livestreaming, allowing people across the country to hear for the first time — as it happens — America’s highest court at work.